Requiescat In Pace, Marvin


Marvin died the other day. He was 13 years old. For a goldfish, that’s about 120 in human years.

We knew he wasn’t long for this world, so I took this picture of him just a few days before he “passed on” (for you librul Yankees, that’s Deep Southern for “croaked”). Some of you knew him. In fact, if you’ve ever visited our home and used our hall bathroom, you may have got to know him quite well, and vice versa.

Later this month, I’ll turn 47. A pretty boring, inconspicuous birthday like that doesn’t usher in thoughts of mortality for most people, but for me it’s a different story. My father died in 1980 when he was 47, just a month before I graduated from high school. If I’m alive on March 15, 2009, I will have lived one day longer than he did.

So what’s that got to do with a dead goldfish? Not much, really. But Marvin’s death has given me the opportunity to collect my thoughts on living and dying and put them in the form of a column for this coming Sunday’s Huntsville Times.

That’s right, I’m going to eulogize a goldfish in Sunday’s paper. Can a 25-cent goldfish show us how to live a simple and righteous life? Check back on Sunday and find out.

Marvin, I miss you buddy. The hall bathroom will never be the same.

Requiescat in pace.

  1. mmlace


    As always, I look forward to your article this coming Sunday. I’m sure you’ll have some wonderful insight out of all this. Much love.

  2. Mike the Eyeguy

    *sniff* He was a good fish…

  3. kdeats

    SO SAD:(

  4. Jason Bybee

    I also look forward to your articles, Mike. Thanks for the teaser! And sorry about Marvin.

  5. Brady

    I know his passing is real recent, and the pain is still fresh, but what did you do with the corpse?

  6. Mike the Eyeguy

    Heh–good question, Brady. Check back Sunday and find out! That’s one of the best parts, so I want to save it. 🙂

  7. JRB

    Poor fish! We love him, even in the very few minutes we knew him. He transfixed my youngest daughter who went missing in your bathroom.

    Swim to glory.

  8. Mike the Eyeguy

    Marvin enjoyed meeting your daughter as well. He wouldn’t stop talking about her for days.

  9. Laurie

    I thought my dog was doing well to make it to sixteen. 🙂

    When my younger brother was in maybe second grade (which would have made me sixth grade), we took turns cleaning the fishbowl and changing the water.

    One day it was his turn. He did it, but used hot water.


    My fish and my older brother’s fish both died. The fish of my younger brother (the guilty partner) survived for three more years. I have not owned a fish since.

    Forty years later, I’ve totally forgiven him.


  10. Laurie

    P.S. By “forty years” I of course mean thirty-five. I am old. I am not THAT old.

  11. Mike the Eyeguy

    Human or goldfish years? Now I’m really confused. 🙂

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